Pop punk is generally considered by fans of hardcore punk to be a sellout of the original punk ethos. However on closer inspection, pop punk's legacy can be traced back as far as The Ramones. Many of the bands from the first two waves of British punk rock also contain elements of the style. Bands like Stiff Little Fingers, The Clash and The Buzzcocks all used poppy hooks and catchy melodies in their music. Many of the current crop of pop punk bands cite these bands as important influences in their own music. Some bands in the Pop punk scene however, notably NOFX and Pennywise, profess a love for American hardcore bands such as The Misfits, Black Flag and particuarly Bad Religion.
The biggest success stories of the first wave of American pop punk have been Green Day, Blink 182 and The Offspring. All of these bands share a similar sound that includes thrashy guitar choruses, chuggy verses and radio-friendly melodies. Some of the bands, however, have incorporated uncommercial elements in their music such as swearing and scatological or toilet humour.
The second wave of pop punk took advantage of the freedom and success won by the previous wave of bands and many new but similar bands were formed including Bowling For Soup, Sum 41, Good Charlotte and Lagwagon. One of the more interesting bands to form around this time was the covers band Me First & The Gimme Gimmes, comprising members of other pop punk bands. Their albums comprised of punked up cover versions of pop songs as well as songs from musicals. Among them are Barry Manilow's "Mandy", John Denver's "Leaving On A Jet Plane" and "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" from The Wizard Of Oz.Their records were released on Fat Wreckords, a prominent pop punk record label.
A common misconception is that bands like Less Than Jake and Rancid are pop punk bands. They are originators of ska punk genre, which is more influenced by English ska bands like Madness and The Specials than The Sex Pistols. Another common mistake made is that hardcore punk rock no longer exists. Bands that play music like that of the American hardcore punk rock movement of the 1980s still exist today, most notably The Distillers and Anti-Flag.